Gas Leak Fatal to Produce Farm Worker

Some occupational risks are higher than others. For individuals who routinely work with gas and power lines, any mistake or accident can be fatal. In a recent local tragedy, a gas leak at a produce farm caused an explosion which killed one worker and sent a dozen others to the hospital. The accident sheds light on the importance of workplace safety checks and the site maintenance to ensure employee well-being.

A gas leak or explosion is likely to cause serious injury and fatalities. For victims and families of farming accidents, workers’ compensation is available to cover medical expenses and lost wages. Families who have lost a loved one in a fatal farming accident may be eligible for workers’ compensation death benefits. Our Spartanburg workers’ compensation attorneys are experienced in helping victims protect their rights and in helping our clients recover the full benefits they deserve after an accident.


Produce farms, like other industrial sites, are regulated by OSHA and must follow protocols and safety measures to ensure safety of workers. When dealing with hazardous chemicals, power lines, and other machinery, workers may be at risk. Employers must be proactive to ensure that employees are properly trained, have the right equipment, and are in safe working conditions to prevent serious accidents or injury.

Investigators of this case are still trying to determine the cause of the gas leak that caused the death of the local worker. In the end there were also 15 emergency workers and civilians who were sent to the hospital with carbon monoxide poisoning. The emergency call was made after two workers were found unconscious–one was slumped over at the wheel of a forklift. The other worker was on the floor in the refrigerated room at the produce farm. Investigators suspect that there was a gas leak in the produce farm’s refrigerator building.

According to reports, 911 dispatchers received a call from Norton Creek Farms around 7 in the evening. When emergency crews arrived, responders were overcome by gas and many of them required treatment. The worker was pronounced dead at the scene and many victims were taken to nearby South Carolina hospitals.

Due to the high number of injuries, the hospital established triage for the workers brought in for medical treatment and care. In addition to emergency medical workers, police officers and fire fighters also responded to the scene. By responding quickly to the accident scene, many of the emergency crew workers avoided serious and permanent injury.

In this case, the farm worker and the emergency response crews are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Emergency responders often face a number of grave dangers when responding to an accident call. To ensure that benefits are properly recovered, victims must provide correct and accurate medical documentation. An experienced advocate can review your case, collect relevant documentation and effectively present your claim for benefits. If your claim was previously denied, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can review your case and explore your options to appeal.

If you or someone you love has suffered work injury in North or South Carolina, contact the Lee Law Offices at 1-800-887-1965 for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case.

More Blog Entries:

New OSHA Rule for Crane and Derrick Workers
, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, May 27, 2013

New Legislation Aims to Bolster OSHA Role in Worker Safety, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, May 25, 2013

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